Happy Fall! Minnesota started the season with record high temperatures and the start of early voting. Check out our 2017 Voter Guide for Saint Paul mayoral candidate responses to transportation and land use questions, podcasts with candidates and more. Here’s the week on streets.mn:
Don’t Hold Your Breath on Amazon by Anton Schieffer continues the conversation started last week with Bill Lindeke’s post in the wake of Amazon’s announcement it is looking for a place for a second headquarters. This post focuses on the lack of housing: “There are plenty of reasons to not want Amazon downtown, and plenty of reasons to oppose large subsidies for private companies. But if there’s a more practical reason to oppose Amazon, it’s that we simply aren’t prepared for equitable economic growth. Minneapolis, and the metro region, needs to increase the available housing options if we want to compete for high-paying jobs.”
Getting To School By 5th Street NE On Bikes is a photo-tour plus commentary of the good and the bad bits about riding a particular route to school with kids by Tony Hunt. The post includes lots of observations about the types of obstacles riders face (human as well as infrastructure) as well as fine-grained recommendations for improvements along this route.
Anti-Harassment Ordinances Empower People On Bikes by Eric Anondson picks up a thread from Tony Hunt’s post. While Minnesota passed a vulnerable road user law in 2015 which adds criminal penalties for careless driving causing death or serious injury and there are existing criminal laws for assault and threatening bodily harm, Los Angeles (and other California cities) offers another model by adding civil remedies for those crimes which people on bikes can seek: “Bicyclist Anti-Harassment Laws are another tool in the toolbox to make streets safer for people. It is one that empowers people who bike to take things into their own hands and not have to wait for a criminal system seemingly historically indifferent to people on bikes.”
I went to Korea and all I got was a Fuller Understanding of Successful Transit Systems brings new perspective bacck to Minnesota. Tom Basgen says of huge, dense Seoul: “I have no end of compliments for their public transit. Below city streets is a web of subways that make it nearly impossible to get further than a half mile from an access point anywhere in the city limits. At street level, nearly a quarter of traffic on the roads appears to be buses, another quarter is their bright orange taxis, whose rates seem fractional compared to those here at home. Those three webs working together have turned car ownership from a necessity into pure status symbol pageantry.”
Look, listen, move
Map Monday: Comparing Safe Routes to Quick Routes in Driving to Work in the Twin Cities Metro shows driving routes which are faster and those which are safer: “To make a long story short, crashes are expensive, and there are ways to avoid them that might take a little longer. That’s what we’re looking at here.”
Podcast #105: Bikes and Churches with Travis Norvell, the Pedaling Pastor from Judson Memorial Baptist Church; the conversation with Bill Lindeke considers the “intersection between faith, bicycling, and the face-to-face work of being a pastor with a congregation full of people.”